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Wild Bení
Chuncho
Chuao
Brasilien Vollmilch
Yuzu

by Georgia Ramon
Info Details
Country Germany   
Type Dark   (+ Dark-Milk; + Flavored)
Strain Chuao   (+ Beniano; + Hybrids)
Source Venezuela   (+ Bolivia; + Brazil; + Peru)
Flavor Fruits & Flowers   (+ Crossover)
Style Classic      (x Neo-Modern)
lo
med
hi
CQ
Sweetness
Acidity
Bitterness
Roast
Intensity
Complexity
Structure
Length
Impact
Transition in the works....

Georg Bernardini, the only person in this modern craft niche to source cacáo, grind cocoa, sell chocolate & critique it all on a global scale, has left the factory. After decades in the biz -- including a prior incarnation with Coppeneur when that label rose, arguably, to the pinnacle of the art -- the man, his partner (Ramona) & their skills are being handed over to an apprentice.

Like Elvis sightings worldwide to this very day, ppl who encountered Georg's work may be prone to thinking in the future that they still savor him everywhere. Memories & nostalgia are a helluva drug. That's just how good it was. As Patrick Phillips penned in Heaven: It will be the past / & it will last / forever.

TY, G-R.

With gratitude,
the C-spot™ (on behalf of chocophiliacs, chocofiends & chocolatarians everywhere)
Appearance   4.2 / 5
Top-10 All-Time Designer Envelope Package / Wrapper
Color: Wild Bení: black-eyed purple
Chuncho: slate brown
Chuao: dark crimson beauty
Brasilien Vollmilch: silver-back brown
Surface: Mondrian in the Chocolate house
Temper: a li'l temperamental (contents shifted in transit)
Snap: quarrelsome
Aroma   7.9 / 10
Wild Bení
84% cacáo-content; Beníano genotype; Tranquilidad Estate; Bolivia
a hash pipe of last night's smoldering campfire along the banks of one turgid stream with coffee grinds for a riverbed

Chuncho
74% cacáo-content; Amazon genotype (U-68, U-70; + ICS; + possible IMC; + perhaps CCN); Ucayali - Urubamba; Peru
a straight & kind wind of caramel, cocoa tannin, white nuts & laurel cut by a piercing frond

Chuao
75% cacáo-content; Chuao; Aragua State; Venezuela
Fabled Chuao, ever the archetypal BIG chocolate with that panjandrum Fruit 'n Flower flavor profile, usually accentuating a huge blueberry plume except here a bit subdued but redolent nonetheless with an assertive dried floral arrangement circulating about sweet acacia / rockrose / saffron; rare for this origin-varietal

Brasilien Vollmilch
60% cacáo-content Dark-Milk; Hybrids; Xingu River Valley; Pará State; Brazil
massive attack of cocoa, caramel & nuts, all laying on wet-dog hair

Yuzu
70% cacáo-content; Hybrids; Öko Caribe; Dominican Republic
seductive draft; so clear, clean & uplifting; gorgeous, dating-worthy, perfumed blossoms thru a vegetal / herbal veil like tobacco leaf & tea
Mouthfeel   11.7 / 15
Texture: sclerotic before it...
Melt: ... slips into fits & starts
Flavor   42.3 / 50
Wild Bení
blackened cocoa / deep fudge -> black olive -> black coffee -> late-breaking black mission fig unto stewed prunes -> clears in a haze of smoked bitter

Chuncho
faithful to the fragrance -- essentially an almond milk, very cream-oriented -- & then, unexpectedly, a bitter-citrus, quite mild, a kind of bitter-almond-orange tonic -> wobbles off fabric 'n sisal FXs

Chuao
flowers come straight off the Aromatics (see above) -> bites into subterranean cocoa depths, including a tolerable bitter root -> deep licorice -> nut skin

Brasilien Vollmilch
crème fraiche leads onto smoked gouda -> honey-caramel... & then things get real interesting: the bar goes 'truffling', as in 'srooms right off the forest floor, fungi galore -> closes out black toffee

Yuzu
bountiful yuzu in a cross twixt meyer lemon 'n kaffir lime riding over a firm yet unobtrusive cocoa plank
Quality   16 / 20
Wild Bení
Black-on-black. Perchance the darkest roast of a Beníano. Eclipses even Amano's private-label take on it.
Uproasted & then some, like seemingly re-roasted for good measure yet without any char or scar! The FX compounded by the relatively low-sugar quotient to rekindle memories of De Vries' early iteration of this strain / origin.

Chuncho
Beguiling. Such disparity in flavor profile. A Frankenstrang(l)e intertwingling the mix thanks to the wide genetic pool from which this chocolate draws. Sort of out of sorts, then distraught with itself. Corrects well enough though. Points to custodial questions with the varietal selection, planting & post-harvesting on the ground in the Cuzco region.

Chuao
Fairly uncharacteristic for Chuao. Very deep, dark roast creates a lower stratum profile save for those opening floral top notes. Yet even those dig down into lower palate registers. A strong & long bar that re-affrims Chuao's resilience in the face of climate-changing level warming!

Brasilien Vollmilch
Unique in the annuls of Dark-Milks. A chocolate-cheese factory that trips on alba-level fungi. Shades of Naive's Porcini but without added mushroom. Deft.

Yuzu
Pretty well paired with Öko Caribe's orange pekoe-laden cacáo hooking up to yuzu. Calibration favors the citrus fruit, decidedly so. Whatever the imbalance, the FXs spell excellence.

INGREDIENTS: cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter, lecithin (for Brasilien Vollmilch add whole milk powder; for Yuzu add yuzu powder; for Wild Bení no added cocoa butter)

Reviewed October 29, 2020

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